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Green Chili Chicken and Bacon Mac and Cheese

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Appetizers and Sides

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-31t

Words cannot describe how much I love this recipe.  This post is part 2 of “How to Make the Perfect Mac and cheese” from earlier this week, however part 1 is also shown here.  Both are amazing, but the additions make this a winning mac and cheese.

Take a look and make yourself a big pot….today!

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-1

Let’s start by cooking your pasta.  Make sure you do NOT overcook your pasta.  You want a nice bite to your pasta so there’s some texture.  I always cook it 1 minute less than the box says so there’s a little bite.  It also cooks more in the cheese sauce.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-8

Once your pasta is cooked al dente, drain.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-9

Let the pasta sit aside for a few minutes while you prepare the roux.

Melting Butter

To make a simple and flavorful roux, start by melting a stick of butter in a medium saucepan.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-5

Whisk in the flour.

salt and pepper

Whisk in the salt and pepper.  A very important step is to continue stirring for a good 3-4 minutes until roux turns a bit darker in color.  It becomes richer and even more fabulous.


Slowly stir in the milk until mixture is thick and creamy.  This step will take a couple minutes over medium heat.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-13

Bring on the cheese!

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-14

I prefer a finely shredded mild cheddar.  It melts quickly and has a perfect “cheddar” flavor.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-15


How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-16

Time to transfer your cooked pasta back to a large dutch oven or pot.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-17

Pour that fabulous cheese sauce over your noodles.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-19

Almost there!

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese by Picky Palate

Perfect!  You can eat the mac and cheese just like this if you’d like or keep scrolling down for the rest of the recipe.

green chilies and chicken

Green chilies and chicken please.

bacon and salsa verde

Bacon and salsa verde.


I used about 1/4 cup chopped chives.  Green onions work too, but I like how small the chives are :)  Give it a good stir and you are ready to eat!  Note:  To thin the sauce add tablespoons of milk until your desired consistency.  We like it thick, so you be the judge.

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-30t

Green Chili, Chicken and Bacon Mac and Cheese

How To Make The Perfect Mac and Cheese-31t Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound dry small pasta, I used elbow
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups milk, I used skim
  • 2 cups finely shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • two 4 ounce cans diced green chilies
  • 2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
  • 2 cups cooked, crumbled bacon pieces (about 1 pound cooked)
  • 1/4 cup mild salsa verde


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside for a few minutes.
  2. To prepare roux, melt butter into a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once melted whisk in flour, salt and pepper. Stir and cook for 3-4 minutes until color of roux will gets slightly darker. Slowly whisk in milk, stirring continuously until thickened, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to a simmer and stir in cheese until melted.
  3. Transfer cooked pasta to large dutch oven or pot over low heat. Pour cheese sauce over top, stirring to combine.
  4. Add green chilies, chicken, bacon and salsa verde, stirring to combine. This is a thick and creamy sauce. To thin sauce, add additional tablespoons of milk at a time until at desired consistency.

Makes 6-8 Servings

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44 Responses | Comments RSS

  1. 1

    I’m seeing so many delicious mac and cheese recipes around recently that it’s making me crave some desperately! Going to have to make this one – the salsa verde is right up my street.

  2. 2
    carrian says:

    and there she is. WOW!

  3. 3

    Are you kidding me?? Completely IN LOVE with this mac and cheese!! Will you come cook me dinner??? :)

  4. 4

    I am such a sucker for mac and cheese, but green chili chicken mac and cheese? I AM IN LOVE!

  5. 5
    Tieghan says:

    An wow! Just wow! This is some lick the bowl clean mac and cheese. I NEED this!

  6. 6
    Maria says:

    Another winning mac and cheese!

  7. 7
    Liz says:

    Delicious. Thank you!

  8. 8

    Ok – now I want the amped up version of mac and cheese! Wow.

  9. 9

    I would love this!! I’ll be making it soon (minus the Green chilies :( hubby is allergic) but everything else looks great!

  10. 10

    What an amazing twist!! Sounds totally drool worthy!

  11. 11
    Jamie G says:

    Such a grown up mac-n-cheese. Sounds wonderful!

    Do you have troubles with clumping cheese sauce when you use bagged shredded cheese? Yours looks pretty creamy.

  12. 12
    Kristen says:

    Such a good looking pot of mac & cheese! YUM!

  13. 13

    I am completely dead right now.

  14. 14
    Amanda B. says:

    Question: My tried and true mac & cheese recipe is from Betty Crocker. After I mix the cheese sauce with the pasta and mix-ins, it goes into a casserole dish to be baked up with a nice crusty layer. Yours seems to be a nice, thick consistency like mine, but I love the crispy bits of browning on the edges.

    Why no bake time for this one? Personal preference?

    I love this assortment of mix-ins, btw. I might have to give it a go!

    • 14.1
      Jenny says:

      Good question. I too love a good baked mac & cheese with a crusty top. However, sometimes the baked mac & cheese is not as cheesy as I’d like so I wanted to create a stove top mac & cheese. You will not regret trying it. Please let me know how it goes.

  15. 15

    this is another winner, Jenny!! Looks so good!

  16. 16
    Amanda says:

    Oh my gosh. Swoon. Must make this ASAP. Your dinner recipes are the best, Jenny!! :) xoxo

  17. 17

    I LOVE bacon in mac n cheese!! It’s the best combo ever!

  18. 18
    Lizzy says:

    Holy Cow, this looks delicious!

  19. 19

    Mac and cheese is my weakness, you are making me cry… from happiness! :)

  20. 20
    JulieD says:

    Love it, Jenny!

  21. 21
    Angelica says:

    Looks great will try sure to love

  22. 22
    Nicole says:

    Green chilies are like candy in my house. Looks like I know what to make for dinner. Yum!

  23. 23

    Chives and bacon? Yes please.

  24. 24
    marla says:

    Mmmmmm. It is like fall here & this would be the perfect dinner!

  25. 25
    Gaby says:

    dying for a tub of this right now Jenny!

  26. 26
    Chels R. says:

    Those bowls are so cute!!!!

  27. 27
    Nichole says:

    OMG. Pinned!

  28. 28

    What a warm and comforting meal! Looks delicious, Jenny! :)

  29. 29
  30. 30
  31. 31

    My eyes refuse to leave the screen and this mac and cheese recipe. Oh my, I can’t wait to try it. Yup, it’s going on next week’s menu. Saved!

  32. 32

    […] and cheese is my absolute favorite food and this Green Chili, Chicken and Bacon Mac and Cheese (from Picky Palate) looks like a great way to switch up traditional macaroni and […]

  33. 33

    I can’t thank you enough for this delicious recipe. The hubs and I loved it.

  34. 34
    Lilo says:

    This was great, but I’d suggest using a full pound of pasta. It seemed like the perfect amount for all ingredients!

  35. 35
    Melanie says:

    Oh my, this looks divine! Talk about taking your mac and cheese and kicking it up a notch!

  36. 36
    Camille S says:

    I have made this several times and my whole family LOVES it. Thank you for sharing this goodness!

  37. 37
    Courtney says:

    I have been making this since you initially posted the recipe and my super picky husband and I devour it every time! We’re expecting our first little bean in a few weeks and I’m trying to stock up on freezer meals. Do you think this recipe would hold up in the freezer if I undercook the pasta a bit?

  38. 38

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Jenny Flake

Welcome to Picky Palate, my online kitchen! You'll usually find me with a cookie in one hand and a salad in the other. It's all about the balance :) The recipes you'll see are my creations. The Picky Palate Cookbook is now available. Enjoy!





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